Nikki Haley’s popularity has plummeted among GOP primary voters

Former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley told Fox News this week that she sees herself as Republican voters’ alternative to frontrunner Donald Trump — if the former president’s legal challenges and GOP voters turn against him.

Her one problem: Republican primary voters no longer see her that way.

According to January’s national NBC News poll, 34% of Republican primary voters view Haley in a positive light, versus 36% who have a negative opinion of her (a -2 net rating).

That’s down from the NBC News poll’s findings in November, when Haley’s popularity among GOP primary voters stood at 43% positive, 17% negative (a +26 net rating).

“I very much see myself as a Republican option that people can realize when you see Donald Trump can’t win, and you know that we have to turn this country around, then I am your alternative,” Haley said on Fox News on Wednesday.

Still, in maybe the most troubling sign for Haley, the erosion in voters who hold favorable opinions of her has come from key parts of the GOP base, including very conservative GOP voters (from a +22 net rating in November to -19 in January), non-college Republicans (from +19 in November to -11 in January) and men (from +25 to -3).

In short, she’s gone from having more fans to having more detractors in each of those subgroups.

And it all comes after Haley has become the sole remaining major opponent against Trump — and especially after she’s escalated her attacks on the former president.

By contrast, Haley’s numbers have remained in the net-positive territory among Republican seniors, though her favorable numbers have declined here from 64% in November to 36% in January — a 28-point drop.

And she’s maintained a net-positive rating among moderate/liberal Republicans (from +23 in November, to +22 in January) and among GOP primary voters with college degrees (from +41 to +14).

That’s consistent with Haley’s performance in January’s New Hampshire primary, where she bested Trump among independents and moderate/liberal voters, according to the NBC News exit poll. But she lost significantly among rank-and-file Republicans, which meant she lost the state overall.